"A revelation of insight into the foundations of human suffering & transcendence. It not only lays out essential steps for inner freedom and joy but illuminates the way to true human potential." Paul Rademacher, author: A Spiritual Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful." Peggy Rubin, author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world and practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd, author: Daring To Be Yourself

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Vitamin D - More Undeniable Evidence of its Importance in Preventing Cancer

Mike Adams, Editor at NaturalNews has put together a wonderful complication of research about Vitamin D and cancer ... especially breast cancer ... please read his article using the link at the end of this post.

Vitamin D Halts Growth of Breast Cancer Tumors

  • A study comparing the health habits of 133 breast cancer patients with women who did not have the disease found that exposure to sunlight lowered the risk of breast cancer by 30 to 40% or more.
  • ...when the same researchers looked at actual vitamin D levels, they found a 43 percent reduction in risk of breast cancer among women younger than 60 when comparing the highest levels of vitamin D (greater than 40) to lowest (less than 20). These findings are consistent with findings that cite a lower risk of breast cancer with increased ultraviolet light exposure, which means higher vitamin D levels are protective. Furthermore, researchers find higher activated vitamin D levels in women with less invasive and/or less advanced breast cancer.

Read the entire article and see the sources Mike used for it here.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Reading the Mind

Neuroscience and technology have been bringing us some of the most fascinating information over the course of the past few decades.

Now ... as seen in this (13-min) video by CBS' 60 Minutes, an experiment took place to see whether we can, indeed read the human mind - or, as the researchers at Carnegie Mellon call it - if we can indeed identify thoughts.

60 Minutes associate producer Meghan Frank writes: "Here I was enclosed inside a giant multimillion dollar functional MRI machine. A magnet creating a magnetic field 60,000 times stronger than the earth’s own magnetic field hummed around me as I stared up at a screen scarcely a foot from my face flashing drawings of igloos and corn on the cob. I knew I would have some unique experiences working at 60 Minutes but I never imagined I’d end up as a guinea pig in a science experiment that would be seen by millions of people. The experiment I volunteered for was research at Carnegie Mellon University to see if scientists could use fMRI scanning in conjunction with computer science to essentially read minds." read the entire article here

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Radio Program "Re-Wiring the Soul" February 2009

Once a month I post the current list of topics for my weekly radio show, live every Wednesday at Rewiring the Soul.

This is what the February 2009 schedule looks like:

  • Feb. 4: Hillary Raimo: Intuitive and Metaphysical Teacher. Hillary Raimo joins us today to discuss her participation in the movie THE PATH. For two prior interviews with the director and producer of the show, as well as with another cast member, William Buhlman, please go to my website's Radio Page and then scroll down to the Interview Section. Hillary will talk to us about the experiences in her life that led her to participate in this movie that addresses the issue of the fact that life does not end at death. Click here for Hillary's website. Click here for a direct link to the show.

  • Feb. 11: Glen Ladegaard and the Sacred Feminine "Body Image Therapy" Born in Denmark and raised in Australia, Glen began painting in 1990 and soon discovered a deep passion for the human form, working in both paint and drawing direct from life (nude). She left Sydney 10 years ago and moved to Andalusia in Southern Spain to dedicate time entirely to her art and continue her studies undisturbed. This has evolved into her latest body of work known as The Sacred Feminine. Glen also dedicates herself to a very specific form of life coaching which she calls "Goddess Guide Coaching" Join us to discuss these, and other topics. Click here for Glen's website. Click here for the direct link to the show.

  • Feb. 18: Zen Habits: Leo Babauta Wows Web With Sensible, Sane Suggestions LEO BABAUTA is one of the world's leading productivity experts. He founded ZenHabits.net in January 2007, and within a year it was one of the Top 50 blogs on the Internet. The site now boasts more than a million unique monthly visitors and more than 80,000 daily subscribers. He's also the author of the Internet's leading productivity ebook, Zen To Done. He lives in Guam with his wife and six children. Leo's blog covers achieving goals, productivity, being organized, GTD, motivation, eliminating debt, saving, getting a flat stomach, eating healthy, simplifying, living frugal, parenting, happiness, and successfully implementing good habits. Click here for Leo's blog. Click here for the direct link to the show.

  • Feb. 25: Beth Netter: An MD Who Focuses on Spiritual and Emotional Healing. Beth Netter, MD brings a host of healing modalities to her patients and clients. A licensed MD specializing in anaesthesiology, with a background at Harvard, Beth Netter successfully melds allopathic and holistic medicine. She is the fifth guest on my show that will share her experiences with us that led her to participate in THE PATH movie ... a movie that addresses the issue of life after life. Click here for Beth's website. Click here for the direct link to the show.

Ways To Listen:

1) LIVE on the web here

2) Past episodes here (these episodes only include shows since Januray 14th, 2009. For prior shows see the next point). These clips are for listening when the show is no longer live, for downloading, etc.)

2) Listen to over 150 archived audio files on my website (in the past it has always taken some time for me to get new shows up on my website due to logistical problems. Now, with the new program Re-Wiring the Soul, new clips will be up in a matter of minutes, for re-listening or downloading ... for adding to ITunes or your IPod)

3) You can also listen to past episodes on my blog ... scroll down on the right sidebar to just below the photo of myself wearing earphones

Show Time & Equivalent Times in Other Locations:

(Locally: 12 noon CET: Central European Time) or go to http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/converter.html to convert from your time zone

- 12 noon (European Central Time) Paris, Berlin, Madrid, Rome (local: Marbella, Spain)

- 1 am Hawaii
- 6 am New York City
- 7 am Mexico City
- 1 pm Cape Town
- 2 pm Moscow
- 3 pm Dubai
- 4 pm Mumbai
- 7 pm Hong Kong
- 8 pm Tokyo
- 10 pm Sydney

Participating in the Show:

If you want to call in during the show, call this US number (646) 727-1281. You can also - at the show's website - "click to talk" online, with no need to make a phone call.

Alternatively, you can chat with me and other listeners online during the show by signing in once you are at the site of that day's episode (see above as listed at the end of each show's description).

Information About This New Show

Many changes have taken place at the local studio where I had been broadcasting for the past five years from 2003 - 2008, and they finally closed their doors to the international section of their station.

Hence, I am continuing to broadcast via another medium and under the name Re-wiring the Soul.

After five years of broadcasting a conventional radio show in Southern Spain about topics in the broad (and frequently eclectic) fields of integral psychotherapy and positive psychology, I wanted to venture further abroad. Thanks to my incredible interlocutor at the station, Brenda Padilla, we managed to produce 150 audio clips from that show and they are all available via my website or blog.

Re-wiring the Soul is the result of my desire for a change. Psychology per se is good, but we need to reach much further in our quest to create the balanced human being. The mission statement for this show might be “using all tools available via nutrition, fitness, psychology, cutting-edge empirical research, holistic therapies, spirituality, neuro-science, etc. to further the growth of the soul.”

This call-in talk show welcomes and interviews guests from all walks of life, although occasionally I will be speaking alone. Those of you who have listened to my past programs know that the main message I have always woven through the shows has consisted of the need for becoming aware and then making good choices from this position of awareness. On this show that will be our guiding dictum.

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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Language We Use Matters

Listening to Barack Obama's interview that was aired yesterday on Al Arabiya TV, I heard him say these words in reference to many of the problems in the Middle East: the language we use matters. Although he was referring to the way the problems in that region are expressed by those of us in other areas of the world, and in particular the press and political leaders past and present, it immediately made me think of it in other terms.

What language do we use to express ourselves inside our heads - our self-talk - about ourselves and what we do and what we plan? Specifically, which words are we using during this self-talk?

Further, what language do we use to express ourselves verbally, when in conversation with others? What words are we hearing ourselves say over and over again?

Are they words that serve to empower us, or do we use words that weaken us, and that lower our energetic frequency? Think about it: when your young child makes a mistake, do you encourage, bolster and support him or her, so that they will try again, with the belief that next time they will do better, or succeed? Or do you cut them down, criticize and belittle them?

Now: in a similar situation, how do you speak to yourself?

What about when you run into a snag during your day? Not necessarily a mountain, just a little snag, but one that is enough to lower your energy ... if you allow it by the messages you send yourself.

Do you say things like:
  • Not again!
  • I really could have done without this!
  • Why does stuff like this always happen to me?
  • I just knew it couldn't continue as smoothly as it had been going...
  • Wouldn't you know it ... just when things were going so well.
  • Typical ... my usual bad luck.

Or do you watch your language and say things like:

  • let's see ... how do we solve this in the best way?
  • what's the quickest way to get around this?
  • wow ... now that I think about it, this is actually good, because it let me see a new perspective. Without it, I would never have come to this conclusion ... which is actually much better in the long term
  • so this is what Ford meant when he said that failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently
  • if Lincoln / Edison / Einstein / Ford could pick themselves up, so can I!
  • so this is what Kennedy meant when he said "Only those who dare to fail greatly can achieve greatly"

The point is not so much that you use words of this nature verbatim, but that you remember their general gist when you need to in order that you maintain your inner energy - your inner sense of purpose - in a good place, rather than going down because of the language you use.

I often refer to energy from the point of view of how you feel inside, of the frequency at which your inner state of being is vibrating, and there are many articles about this subject here on the blog (click on the label below). In order to maintain this energy at an optimum level at all times, it is expedient to take good care of that energy. If you want to maintain a toned body, with strong muscles, it is clear that you must do something about that body and those muscles. It's the same thing with this energy I'm referring to. Many, many things - many easy things - can be done, as long as they are done frequently (as you would exercise frequently in order to maintain a toned body), in order to maintain such a state of good energy. Again, I recommend that you have a look at the posts about energy on this blog, and in particular, these:

Photo: Namibia

Monday, January 26, 2009

Research and the Soul

In an article today in Science Daily we are informed that researchers will now delve into areas that contemporary science is not able to explain. Areas such as the mystery of consciousness.

I believe that the day science is able to explain such a phenomenon - and I am totally convinced that such a day will come - is the day when science will have totally merged with spirituality. (If you prefer, call it knowledge of the spirit, or even the science of spirituality).

The author of the study, Professor Coates states this: “When we see a sunset or hear a symphony our sense organs, brains and bodies are moved in ways that are well understood by the physical and biological sciences. But during such experiences we also enjoy distinctive forms of conscious awareness. Yet this undeniable fact about our conscious lives is stubbornly resistant to scientific understanding. How is it even possible for purely physical brain activity to produce conscious experience? How do the qualities that manifest themselves in experience relate to the very different properties that are referred to in scientific descriptions of the physical world?”

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Whatever You Can Conceive and Believe....You Can Achieve!!!

The sentence used as the title for today's post has been attributed to different writers over the years, ranging from Goethe to Napoleon Hill. The idea inherent in it, even if not the exact words, has indeed been expressed for centuries, if not millennia by many different thinkers, writers, and philosophers.

But few of us actually take it to heart.

If you can imagine something, and you can believe in it, you can achieve it. That is what it says ... and that is what many have done in some fashion or another. Look at it from the point of view of authors from other epochs, such as Jules Verne who envisioned traveling to the moon, or boats that went under water. In his time such thinking was considered the product of a fanciful mind, given to perhaps a too high degree of imagination. And yet, we brought it about. Think about celebrities who tell interviewers that from the time they were children, they could see themselves singing or acting in front of vast audiences.

Finding examples that prove - in some fashion - the veracity of the statement in the title of this blog is not hard. It is much harder finding within ourselves the psychological and emotional resources and wherewithal, not to mention the spiritual ones, that lead us to such a place where we can, in fact, bring such thinking into our own lives.

What do we dream of? What - if we imagine it, or daydream about it - brings us to a place where we feel invigorated, charged, pumped? What does feeling that way tell us? If we are to believe many writers of this 21st century, it means that we are on the track to something that brings us closer to our life's true purpose. Supposing that is true, and supposing the statement from the title of today's post is also true, doesn't it then make sense, that we round out this image in our mind, that we hone it and define it and dream about it with such detail that we really know what it would look like, be like, feel like, taste like, sound like, etc., if it were already real?

And once it is so real in our minds that we can almost touch it, that we then believe in it, in order to bring it another step closer to reality?

Somewhere in there, of course, there has to be an action plan. If we don't know exactly how to bring something about, we can nevertheless be consciously working on early steps, aware of the fact that the more we move in the direction of the image, the more we open opportunities for doors to open that will bring us closer to it.

Along this road towards the achieving of the dream you must understand that it is essential to pay very close attention to your emotional frequency. The more you dwell on that which is not yet the way you want it to be, the more you dwell on the current reality of something you do not wish in your life, the more you will have it. In other words, while you dwell in the current reality, the way you are feeling needs to be directed by the image and the feelings as you think about it, that it evokes in you.

Oh, but I have so many pressing problems right now. I need to be realistic and deal with them. Yes you do. But do your due diligence with them every day for a limited amount of time. Once that is done, use the rest of the day to maintain your thoughts and especially your feelings in that other place. Start practicing right now, and you will see that it becomes a habit. You will enjoy feeling that way, rather than the worrying, negative way. It does not mean that you are no longer responsible, or that you are shirking irksome duties. It simply means you have chosen to look in new directions a greater portion of your time rather than in the same negative ones.

Albert Einstein once said: Some people look at life and see nothing as a miracle. I look at life and see EVERYTHING as a miracle.

Imagine the accumulation - over a lifetime - of thoughts of worry and fear and dread and negativity (due to daily problems in your particular reality), as opposed to the accumulation - over a lifetime - of thoughts of joy and anticipation and freedom. This is the direction you can choose to go in right now if you so desire and decide. And as you do it, you will begin to move in the directions of your dreams.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Pearl Principle

No inner irritation

No Pearl.

Lama Surya Das
Lama Surya Das, one of the foremost American Lamas in the Buddhist tradition, has been an integral part of Buddhism's surge in popularity in recent years. He has made Buddhism accessible and inspiring to serious practitioners and neophytes alike.
Read some of his articles, articles written about him, and listen to some podcasts here.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Environmentalism and Being Concerned With What You Eat

A great book by Mark Bittman called Food Matters: A Guide to Conscious Eating is discussed by the author himself in a video you can view here.

Here are some of the facts he points out:

  • you can't be concerned with the environment if you are not concerned with what you eat

  • in the UK and USA and some other first world countries, the daily consumption of meat per person and day is one-half of a pound

  • 10 billion animals are killed each year in the USA alone in order to supply that amount

  • 60 billion animals are killed each year globally in order to supply meat to the entire world

  • the world uses 70% of available farmland to produce these animals or food to feed them, in order to supply enough meat for global consumption

  • by 2050 the projected global animal consumption stands at 120 billion animals per day

  • further, in the USA each person eats another average of 1.5 pounds of other animal products per day, such as eggs, cheese, milk, etc.

  • of an approximate 3 lbs of food eaten per person per day, therefore, .5 lbs comes from meat, 1.5 lbs comes from animal-related products, and 1 lb comes from other sources

  • of that, only between 10% (of one pound) to .5 lbs comes from plants (fruit, vegetables, legumes, etc.)

By lowering animal consumption these are some of the results we would see:

  • decrease in green house gases

  • decrease in the incidence of obesity

  • decrease in cancer rates

  • decrease in diabetes rates
Mark Bittman is not suggesting the world become vegetarian, but he is suggesting we begin to process this kind of information and decide to make some responsible choices about what we eat from the point of view of the consequences of our choices on the ecology of the planet.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

U @ 50

This thought-provoking video (length: 1m44s) was created for the AARP U@50 video contest and placed second. How will you be at 50?

Although this video has nothing to do with politics, it is based on the Argentinian Political Advertisement "The Truth" by RECREAR. If you would like more info about that video you can find it here .

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Options in the Face of Death (Free E-book by Scott Blum)

Author and DailyOM co-founder, Scott Blum, is making his new book Summer's Path available for a limited time as a free eBook (text or audio), downloadable from his Website (ScottBlum.net).

Summer's Path is the remarkable story of Don Newport, an engineer who, after losing his job and his health insurance, learns he has a terminal disease and only a few months left to live. To spare his beloved wife, Don seeks a way to end his life that won't further traumatize her. His answer comes when he meets Robert, a brazen angel of death who offers him a rare and unexpected option.

Summer's Path is the prequel to the highly anticipated hard cover book, Waiting for Autumn (releasing April 2009).

When you download the book, you can also enter to win a FREE Kindle plus a gift certificate for 65 books of your choice ($1,000+ value)!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Nurturing the Inner Self

Whew! It's Inauguration Day in the USA and I've been sitting here in Spain watching the ceremonies on TV, the speeches and the commentators.

But as the diverse international news channels began to focus on the rest of the world again, not only were we fed breaking news regarding all that is wrong with the world, but even during a brief interview of a politician who spoke of yet another crisis in yet another sector of this global community, the ticker tape at the bottom of the screen brought out message after message (and they are all very brief, so that you can read them at one go, as they flash across the screen) reiterating the constant killing, genocide, hunger, sickness, disease, and failing economies of the world.

I mention this subject frequently because I know that many people react to this by feeling even worse than they may already be feeling. They listen to the news, and they see this ticker tape of negative news, and they concentrate on that. Their inner eye, their energetic state, their sense of well-being is imbued with the dread of all of this bad news, this constant stream of information that is destined to pull us down, because none of it is good. But because it raises the spectre of fear, it keeps us hooked, we have to keep watching, just in case the next bit of bad news is something we need to be informed about. And so we get caught up in a vicious cycle of self-defeat - or at least - in a cycle of defeat of the good energetic place in which we should be choosing to find ourselves in, rather than the one we get placed into by our willingness to watch this negativity day after day after day, and then, to make matters worse, to continue to think about it and discuss it with everyone we meet.

And yet good things are constantly happening. A cancer patient has a remission. Better and better medication for AIDS have been found. A child was rescued from a well. A domestic pet saved its owner by risking its own life. A scientist in some obscure university of some obscure country has discovered what may be a cure for Alzheimer's. A new chip has been invented that will bring the price of personal computers to what calculators cost. Etc. etc. But we are not given this part of the news. At least not at the hours that Breaking News tends to be brought to the awareness of the public. Instead, we are given the terror and the horror and the fear of the other part of the news.

And then perhaps, on Saturday morning, or Sunday afternoon, when they need fillers, when hardly anyone is watching, they give us the rest of it. Those bits, that if they gave them to us interspersed with the bad stuff, would allow us to have a measure of balance, a sense that the world is not a terrible place to be, or that things are so bad that we have no hope.

Why not turn off your TV, other than perhaps a 15-minute segment to remain apprized of the most urgent news, or at least turn off your news channels, so that those who decide what we will be given to be nurtured with, realize that that kind of nourishment is not acceptable.

Photo: Capetown, South Africa

Monday, January 19, 2009

Getting Over It Sooner or Later

When you start realizing that your thinking is something you can change about at will, in order to best suit your inner and outer health and well-being, you can get on a real roller-coaster ... because you begin to realize how easy it is.

You decide how to think about something. If a bad thing happens, you decide how to focus on it, which way to look at it. If an unexpected delay or impediment comes up, you decide how to focus on it, which way to look at it.

It really applies to everything.

And so thinking about this the other day, I listened to the story being told about something Hemingway writes about in Islands in the Stream. Apparently a man had just been notified that his son had been killed in the war overseas. And that night he was out dancing. Someone angrily remonstrated with him, saying: How can you be dancing if your son was just killed?

His answer?

I know that I will have to get over it sooner or later, so I have simply chosen when that will be.

This may seem heartless, even cruel. But think about it. Whom does it serve for him to spend weeks and months grieving? A psychotherapist such as myself might say that he needs to grieve in order to find closure. Perhaps so. Perhaps most do. But perhaps much of it is in our minds.

Just as it is in our minds when we decide to let something go that we have been holding on to for months, years, or even decades, such as resentment, bitterness, pain, anger, and hatred. We can choose to let go of that sooner or later as well. And isn't sooner better than later?

The energy with which we suffuse ourselves can be high or low, positive or negative, but it is really up to us, it remains our choice, and hence is our responsibility.

Photo: El Arco, Cabo San Lucas, Baja California

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Going As High As You Think

It always seems to come back to our thoughts. If we can become aware and conscious of ourselves and our thoughts and feelings, we can begin to take a measure of what we are allowing into our lives though them.

Heed your feelings, heed your thoughts, in reality, heed the state of your inner being, your energy, for wherever it is, there are you, and that is where you will remain, until you change it.

Benjamin Disraeli said it very well: Nurture your mind with great thoughts, for you will never go any higher than you think.

Read some of my previous posts on this subject of our inner energy and the important role it plays in the development of our lives:

Photo: The Walls of Avila, Spain

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Ambition to Meaning - Wayne Dyer's New Movie

Watch the trailer to Wayne Dyer's new movie Ambition to Meaning here. In the past Dyer has written books and produced audio CD's, so this is something new for him, and I was a bit skeptical when I heard of it. It seems that everyone is getting on the bandwagon since The Secret hit the screens several years ago, and producing movies left and right. But this is good. It addresses an issue that is not often discussed - although in my practice it's a mainstay - and that is the issue of meaning in life, the issue of finding a meaning in life.

In the film, Dyer offsets a conversation he is maintaining with some producers for a film he is shooting in the film, with the stories of different people who are going through a moment of crisis or insight in their lives, weaving those stories into the dialogue Dyer maintains with the film crew who is shooting scenes of him explaining this deeply important concept of having a meaning in one's life.

The trailer is very brief, and doesn't really give you too much of an idea, but you can view the film online here for US $4.95 (I happened to catch it on one of the days it was free). Have a look, it's worth it.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

What's Our Excuse?

This just takes a couple of minutes to view ... and it is worth it ... we are all one!

Watch CBS Videos Online

Saturday, January 10, 2009

When You Believe You Are Failing...

If you have been working hard, moving towards your goal of:
  • getting a promotion
  • improving your golf score
  • losing weight
  • finishing a degree at night while you work during the day
  • honing your body
  • playing the piano
  • making your first million
  • writing a book
  • finding a gallery that will hang your paintings
  • getting chosen for the football team
  • running 6 km in one hour
  • and all the etceteras you can possibly imagine

and feel disheartened, because you have not yet reached your goal, or because today you failed to keep up to your pre-set schedule, then read on:

"The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."

Theodore Roosevelt in a speech in Paris on April 23, 1910

Friday, January 9, 2009

Better Cognitive Function in Women Who are Physically Fit

In Science Daily we are once again informed about the importance about remaining physically fit - in this case in order to maintain high cognitive function. Our brain responds well to physical fitness, as do many of our other, more physiological functions.

Poulin, a scientist in the Faculties of Medicine and Kinesiology at the University of Calgary stated: "This study proves for the first time that people who are fit have better blood flow to their brain. Our findings also show that better blood flow translates into improved cognition."

"The take home message from our research is that basic fitness – something as simple as getting out for a walk every day – is critical to staying mentally sharp and remaining healthy as we age," says Poulin, a member of the Department of Physiology & Biophysics, and the Hotchkiss Brain Institute. read entire article here

Saturday, January 3, 2009

How Do You Choose To React?

Listen to this YouTube audio clip from another one of my radio shows ... How Do You Choose to React?

I will upload the second and third parts as soon as possible.

Part 1 of 3 (10 minutes)

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel here

If you have any problems viewing my YouTube videos here on the blog, please click here to see them directly on YouTube.

Previous Shows I have broadcast that are now available via YouTube:

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Not Minding What Happens

My three magnificent sons have been visiting here in Spain over Christmas and New Year's. I've been so thrilled to have them all together again at one time and in one country, rather than seeing one here and another there, and so on. But ... they all caught some nasty bug that has been doing the rounds here from northern Spain to the Mediterranean Coast where I live. High fever, nausea, painful cough, etc. (Funnily enough, I didn't get it despite our close physical proximity since the first came down with it, and each of his brothers in close succession, and despite the fact that I became - ipso facto - and naturally enough, nurse and chief cook and bottle-washer).

However, this did spoil our carefully laid plans and we have been obliged to curtail many of the activities and sight-seeing excursions to Cordoba, Seville, and Granada that we had wanted to undertake together, creating some expected and logical disappointment, and so today, as I woke up, I picked up a well-worn copy of Tolle's A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose and opened it at random.

(If you have not seen his ten 90-minute webinars about this book on Oprah's website, click here to access them. This link is always available on the right side-bar of my blog in the links section.)

This is what I read as a subtitle on the page that had opened: Not Minding What Happens. Tolle refers to Krishnamurti, the Indian philosopher and spiritual teacher, who traveled the world for over 50 years attempting to convey through words - which are content - that which is beyond words, beyond content. Tolle writes that at one of Krishnamurti's talks he asked his audience if they wanted to know his secret; many had been coming to his conferences for years and had still not grasped the essence of his teachings.

"This is my secret," he said. "I don't mind what happens."

And Tolle explains: To be in alignment with what is means to be in a relationship of inner nonresistance with what happens. It means not to label it mentally as good or bad, but to let it be. Does this mean you can no longer take action to bring about change in your life? On the contrary. When the basis for your actions is inner alignment with the present moment, your actions become empowered by the intelligence of Life itself.

Chris Griscom also wrote, many years ago, in one of her many magnificent books: where there is no resistance, there is no pain.

As I read those words, I remembered something similar in Tolle's seminal work The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment. The two short paragraphs in that earlier book had meant a great deal to me almost three years ago when I was given a diagnosis of malignant uterine cancer.

Tolle wrote this: The present moment is sometimes unacceptable, unpleasant, or awful.

It is as it is. Observe how the mind labels it and how this labeling process, this continuous sitting in judgment, creates pain and unhappiness. By watching the mechanics of the mind, you step out of its resistance patterns, and you can then allow the present moment to be. This will give you a taste of the state of inner freedom from external conditions, the state of true inner peace. Then see what happens, and take action if necessary or possible.

Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Aways work with it, not against it. Make it your friend and ally, not your enemy. This will miraculously transform your whole life.

Why not use that as your guiding motif for this New Year that has just begun: Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Aways work with it, not against it. Make it your friend and ally, not your enemy. This will miraculously transform your whole life.

This will miraculously transform your whole life.